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Maneka Gandhi

  • Union Minister for Women and Child Development

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Petitioning Maneka Gandhi

Stop repeat offences by child molesters. Allow adult survivors to report childhood abuse

I was sexually abused by my cousin’s husband when I was a little girl. I would wake up at night to find him sitting next to me in the dark. He would put his hands and mouth on my private parts. I would lie there, terrified and disgusted. I was so ashamed and confused that I told no one about the abuse. It continued till I turned 13. It was only as an adult that I realized what had happened to me. I also realized that I was not alone. Many child molesters are repeat offenders. They continue to abuse young children over decades. This meant that many of my young cousins and nieces were in danger. So I gathered courage and spoke to my family about it. My story was immediately confirmed by another cousin. She too had been abused by the same man. I decided to stop my molester from abusing more children by filing a complaint against him. But the police did not know of a law or legal route that they could use to allow an adult survivor to file a complaint about childhood abuse. I felt helpless and powerless. I could take no action against my molester, I could not prevent him from committing more abuse if he wanted to. But, I’m not willing to give up. That’s why I started this petition asking the Government of India to allow adult survivors to file complaints about childhood abuse. Sign my petition. It’s unrealistic to expect young children to walk to a police station and file a complaint about abuse. As a child I did not even know what was happening to me. I thought this was my fault, and I didn't even realize that I could go to an adult for help. I could only stay silent. But, I am an adult now, and I should have support and legal means to stop my molester from potentially continuing his offences on other children. Unfortunately, my story is not unique. What I have written about happens to many many children. There are many adults like me who are carrying the burden of childhood abuse. We need your support. To get justice for ourselves and protect other children from abuse. Sign my petition and appeal to the Indian Government to allow adult survivors of child abuse to file complaints.

Purnima Govindarajulu
388,575 supporters
Petitioning Maneka Gandhi

Teach Kids & Teachers How To Fight Sexual Abuse: Make it part of the syllabus

Trigger Warning: Content About Sexual Abuse I was 4-years-old when I was sexually abused. It was a trusted family member. I was too confused to know what was happening. When I was 8, the caretaker of my apartment molested me by pretending to play a game. My aunt laughed at me when I tried to talk to her. What happened to me continues to happen to thousands of children across the country. In these horrible times, no child is safe. That’s why I want schools in India to have compulsory Personal Safety Education. I was abused till I was 19 years old. But not one person noticed what I was going through. My education suffered and they blamed me. They didn’t see the depression. They didn’t even see the physical signs. Throughout my childhood I kept looking for a safe space. But it isn’t easy to talk about abuse in India. Children must learn how to be safe, to identify and avoid predators. Teachers and staff must learn how to identify signs of abuse and provide counselling and parents must learn how to protect their children. And should a child ever face abuse or even the possibility of abuse, they will have a teacher they can trust and safely turn to. A teacher who won’t laugh it off, who won’t ignore the warning signs, who will be there for the child. I’m asking the two largest school boards in India - CBSE and ISCE to make Personal Safety Education a compulsory part of the syllabus. This will impact lakhs of children in India. Sign my petition now so that I can show the Government, the CBSE and ISCE that lakhs of Indians want their children to be safe. Help me make this country a little bit safer for children.

Pranaadhika Sinha Devburman
141,827 supporters
Petitioning Maneka Gandhi

#JusticeForNirbhaya: Pass The Law - NewsX Campaign

The Juvenile Justice Amendment Act passed by the Lok Sabha and pending before the Rajya Sabha needs to be debated and passed immediately to ensure that Juveniles convicted of heinous crimes and not showing signs of reform can be kept in custody.

82,082 supporters
Petitioning Maneka Gandhi

Penalise Schools that Fail to Safeguard Their Students

In January, a 6-year-old boy was found dead at Ryan International School, Delhi. 5 people, including school employees, were arrested and then released on bail the same day. Attacks against children in schools happen regularly across India. There is outrage and shock immediately after the incident, and then things return to normal. Sign my petition asking CBSE to penalise schools where children have been attacked, raped or killed because of a lapse in security measures. Many schools make parents sign waiver forms that declare that the school cannot be held responsible for the child’s safety and well being. Even if a student is raped or killed within school premises, the school will not be answerable. Sign my petition to make schools take responsibility for our children. We have to stop this. If all parents in our country speak up, we can get a response from CBSE, the board with the maximum number of schools across India. After that, the other boards might also act. Sign and share my petition. Do it for our children. Do it for our country’s future. ------ We are changing our ask from "Derecognising schools" to "Penalising Schools" after a lot of feedback from Parents and Teachers. We don't want parents and students to suffer because their school has lost recognition. We want schools to be worried about heavy penalties and implement standard protection for all their students. This should cover: 1. Stringent Background checks for all teachers and staff.2. Security to ensure authorised and monitored entry/exit of students/strangers/parents.3. CCTV coverage to gather evidence of any wrongdoing.4.Surprise audits of schools for safety measures.Schools to obtain a yearly certificate for safety measures.5.Incase of any security failure the offenders to be punished, institutional head and certifying authority to be heavily penalised, These are only some high-level ideas, but we can discuss more once CBSE responds. We want to the board to ensure that all schools recognised by CBSE comply with these standards or are hit by stiff penalties, especially when children in these schools are hurt or attacked.

Concerned Parent
61,150 supporters
Petitioning Maneka Gandhi

Stop Harassing Sindhutai Sapkal; Don't Close Down Her Orphanages

Sindhutai Sapkal is called Mai by the 1000s of children who she has helped raise through her numerous orphanages across Maharashtra. Today she is being asked to shut down her orphanages by the state government. Sign my petition to prevent over a 1000 children from being forcibly returned to government orphanages. These government orphanages are severely underfunded and overpopulated. There is no room for these children and their lives will be destroyed by this hasty decision.  Sindhutai Sapkal has dedicated her whole life to bringing up orphaned children with singular dedication and devotion. The quality upbringing she provides these children - including food, stay and education - has led to many of these children growing up to become lawyers and doctors. Many of  you may have seen the Marathi biopic on her life : Mee Sindhutai Sapkal.  She has been honoured with numerous awards including the prestigious Holkar award by the Government of Maharashtra. Now the same Government is targeting her, sabotaging her incredible work. Sindhutai has been trying to get her orphanages registered since 2011. The Government made her run around and refused to cooperate. Now they want to shut her down for not being registered. This amazing woman even got her own daughter admitted in an orphanage so that she could be fair to all the children. Now, all her sacrifices and her hard work will go to waste because of cruel and indifferent Government bureaucracy that doesn’t seem to care about the children at all. Sign my petition asking CM Devendra Fadnavis and Central Minister for Women and Child Development Maneka Gandhi to help Sindhutai continue her great work. Support this campaign to defend someone who has devoted her entire life to doing good for others. Do it so that people like us are not scared to do good for society.

Sucheta Dalal
20,907 supporters
Petitioning Honorable Prime Minister of India, Honorable Human Resource Development Minister of India, Maneka Gandhi, Honarable Home Minister of India

Please Create Jobs for Criminology Graduates in Central & State Governments of India

Criminology, as an independent field of Study was introduced in 1959 in India at the University of Sagar, Madhya Pradesh based on the recommendations of UNESCO in cooperation with International Society of Criminology. Even though, Criminology entered India as an academic discipline in the 20th Century, it is not new in terms of Philosophy and Culture, as India has reminiscences of Crime and Justice in Ancient Texts like Manusmiriti, Arthashastra, and Thirukkural.   Tata Institute of Social Sciences (TISS) started offering courses in Criminology from a Social work perspective in 1954 with the support of American Criminologist Professor Walter Reckless who was invited by the Government of India to revamp the Prisons and Correctional Administration in India. In 1972, a National Institute of Criminology & Forensic Science (NICFS) was created under the Ministry of Home Affairs and this institute started offering MA/MSc courses from 2004 in affiliation with Guru Gobind Singh Indraprastha University, New Delhi. The University Grants Commission (UGC) of India has approved the subject Criminology and included it in the UGC-JRF-NET Examination (Code 68). In 2009, the Honourable Prime Minister of India and the then Chief Minister of Gujarat Shri Narendra Modi created the first Police and Security University of India in the name 'Raksha Shakti University" (RSU) at Ahmedabad, Gujarat and this is the first University in the Western India to offer Criminology courses.  However, even after 58 years of the introduction of Criminology in India, there are only Twelve Independent University Departments of Criminology (Doctor Harisingh Gour Vishwavidyalaya Sagar (University of Sagar), Tata Institute of Social Sciences, Karnatak University, Maharaja's College, University of Mysore, University of Madras, Manonmaniam Sundaranar University, National Institute of Criminology and Forensic Science, Rani Channama University, Raksha Shakti University, Sardar Patel University of Police, Security & Criminal Justice and Most recently Jharkhand Raksha Shakti University and Gujarat Forensic Sciences University (Only course and no department) offering courses on Criminology and few courses are offered in Colleges in some states and five universities offering Criminology by Distance Education. Though, there are many law colleges/schools that offer Criminology it remains a pure domain of law students and there is less scope for pure criminology students as Bar Council of India has NOT recognized Criminology as Social Science (like Political Science, History and Economics) to be taught at law colleges/law schools. Criminology students are trained in: Crime Prevention, Criminal Law, Security Management, Social Work, Constitution & Human Rights, Child Protection, Crimes against Women, Counselling and Guidance, Investigative Journalism, Social Defence, Forensic Science & Forensics Medicine, Research Methodology & Statistics, Quantitative Crime Analysis & Crime Mapping, Psychology of Crime, Environmental Crime & Laws, Bank Frauds, Victimology and Victim Assistance, Prison Administration, Police Administration, Criminal Justice Policy. Criminology Students visit various wings of Criminal Justice System and submit reports. They also do internship with Governmental Criminal Justice Agencies/NGO's and they submit a Research based Dissertation on issues of Crime, Justice and Victimization. In spite of the fact, that, Criminology students possess immense knowledge in the above mentioned areas, jobs are not at par with subjects like Psychology, Sociology, Social Work and Law etc., The job opportunities for Criminology students are bleak both in Government and Private Sector including NGO's.   Hence, We Request and Urge the Government of India and the Governments of Indian States:  1. To Appoint Criminology graduates holding BA/MA/MSc/MPhil/PhD in Criminology in various posts under the Ministry of Home Affairs (MHA) at Bureau of Police Research and Development/National Crime Records Bureau and other similar wings of MHA as Criminologists/Policy Analysts/Research Officers/Associates. (Recently, Raksha Shakti University, Ahmedabad, Gujarat has appointed three Criminologists as a pilot model to support the Commissionerate of Police, Ahmedabad in formulating Crime Prevention strategies. The Gujarat model may be followed by the Central and State Governments of India) 2. To Appoint Criminology graduates in various posts under Ministry of Women and Child Development and Ministry of Social Justice and Empowerment as Policy Analysts/Child Protection Officers/Researchers/Trainers.  3. To Appoint Criminology graduates in various commissions such as National Human Rights Commission (NHRC), National Commission for Women (NCW), and National Commission for Protection of Child Rights (NCPCR) as Policy Analysts/Researchers. 4. To Appoint Criminology UGC NET holders and PhD holders in Criminology as Assistant Professors / Faculty Members in the Police Training Institutions like Sardar Vallabhbhai Patel National Police Academy, CBI Academy, NICFS, Prison Training Academies, State level Police Academies, Police Training Schools, Central Detective Training Schools etc. 5. To Create new Departments of Criminology at Universities and Colleges and appoint Criminology UGC NET holders and PhD holders in Criminology as Assistant Professors. 6. To Start Undergraduate programmes in Criminology in Government Colleges and Central Universities.  7. To Include Criminology as an Optional Subject in UPSC (Civil Services and other Examinations) and State Public Service Commissions.   8. To Recommend the Bar Council of India (BCI) to include Criminology as a Social Science Subject be taught at law colleges/law schools and Appoint Criminology graduates holding MA/MSc/MPhil/PhD in Criminology as Assistant Professors to teach Criminology and allied subjects to Law Students. What benefits the Governments will get in appointing Criminology graduates? Evidence based Crime Policy is the norm of the day and the appointment of Criminology graduates will help the governments formulate crime policies in a scientific manner. Translational Criminology (Evidence based Policing - Researchers and policing partnership - Translating Research in to Practice) will yield better results in Crime prevention and Crime Control.  The Effectiveness and Efficiency of the Criminal Justice System will improve and it will instill confidence in the minds of the Citizens and potential Voters. Fear of Crime will reduce and people will trust the police and justice systems. A body of knowledge will develop and in the future there will be more Criminologists in the country who will help and assist in the polices on justice and victim assistance. Criminologists as Trainers in the Police academies will instill the core theoretical criminological components and the police trainee will enhance his/her skills to hit the roots of the crime problem rather than the branches. Faculty Members and Students of Criminology Departments in the Universities and Colleges will assist the local police departments in crime prevention and will assist in community policing. Criminology Students will create more awareness among the public in areas such as crime prevention, victimization prevention and thereby will reduce the fear of crime and victimization. Research in Criminology will increase in the country and it will benefit in the long turn in making effective public policies. Criminologists will not only assist in policing, but also in allied areas such as women and child development, correctional administration, social work, health, urban planning, and local governance.

Prof. K. Jaishankar, President, South Asian Society of Criminology and Victimology
4,241 supporters
Petitioning Haryana BJP

Support Naresh Kadian, to contest election from Beri constituency in Haryana

Naresh Kadian, strong animal rights activist in India, needs BJP support, to contest election from Beri constituency in Haryana, to be a political voice for animals in Assembly, human beings as well.

OIPA in India
3,023 supporters
Petitioning Maneka Gandhi

Make Animal Welfare a Priority, Thereby Helping To Make The City Safer For All

It was a sunny June morning, with the weather good enough to make a perfect day. And a perfect day it was; at least for the first few hours. I noticed something amiss when I left my house to attend a friend's birthday breakfast. One of the seven stray dogs living in my neighbourhood had been hit by a car, and his leg was clearly broken. He was lying surrounded by a crowd of people, drawn by his anguished howls, who were debating whether to seek aid or to pelt him. Most only cared to make the noise stop.  A fellow neighbour, who used to take care of these strays, intervened and the two of us decided to take the injured dog to a government vet. But how could we do that? His leg was badly hurt, he could barely stand, and the vet couldn't possibly reach here because the veterinary government hospital had no vehicle. So we chose to do what seemed to be the most reasonable thing at that moment, and carried him to the hospital on foot.  Twenty minutes and a kilometre long walk later, we reached the hospital. We were told, later on, that the internal injuries were too great and the poor creature had to be euthanized. According to the head veterinarian, ours was the third incident of a stray dog being the victim of an automobile injury on that very day. He also told us that of all the cases that are reported, 90% are due to automobile injuries. It was evident that Indian commuters, who cared so little about their fellow humans, cared about dogs not at all. Birthday party long forgotten, I felt a profound sadness for the plight of mankind’s closest companions. Though I was covered in sweat and possibly lice, what bothered me more was that most stray dogs would die alone and unmourned, never having had a decent meal in their life. Who were so vulnerable to their surroundings that their survival was a matter of luck, and any random speeding vehicle could spell their doom. Who were so valueless that even the government doctors who were meant to treat them, weren’t provided with basic mobility to let them get to animals in need. It is funny how some of life's most humbling experiences occur when you least expect them to. In the next few months we got together with several organisations who worked for animal welfare. Our Sunday mornings were often spent volunteering at Government veterinary hospitals, and getting a deeper understanding of the actual problem. After all this time, and some valuable insight from various social workers in the city, we have prepared a list of several practices that should be implemented immediately. Steps that must be taken to advocate animal welfare programs can fall into two major categories: Sterilisation & Vaccination Animal Health Care  Sterilisation & Vaccination Sterilisation of street dogs, which is the surgical removal of their sex organs and; Administration of an Anti Rabies Vaccine, prior to the dogs being released in the same area where they were picked up from, must be carried out by the local government authorities. Some points related to Animal Birth Control Programme are as follows: Getting dogs sterilised is the best form of welfare we can all do for street dogs, as these dogs will be vaccinated in the process and will not have to give birth to pups anymore. It will not only reduce the misery caused to the new ones by humans, but also reduce their general population, in turn making the streets safer. Sterilisation helps calm the dogs down and restricts their numbers. It reduces anxiety and the habit to run away or to attack other animals, people or even furniture. It increases their concentration and attention span, thus also reducing the risk of automobile injuries. It avoids many terminal illnesses like testicular tumours, tumours of the hepatoid glands, and cysts, among others. It eliminates the possibility of contracting cancer of the ovaries or the uterus (the number one cause of death amongst unspayed females). It must be noted that only dogs above the age of 4 months can be picked up for sterilisation. And the right ear of sterilised dogs is notched/cut at the tip as a mark of identification. The laws governing Street Dog Sterilisation in India: Government of India notified the Animal Birth Control (Dogs) Rules, 2001, under the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals Act, 1960 vide the Gazette of India: Extra Ordinary Part II – Sec. 3 – sub section.II dated 24th December 2001 to implement sterilisation and vaccination of street/community dogs to control the dog population. As per Indian law, street dogs cannot be beaten, killed or driven away or displaced or dislocated, they can only be sterilised in the manner envisaged in the The Animal Birth Control (Dogs) Rules, 2001 enacted under the Indian Prevention of Cruelty to Animals Act 1960 (A Central Act), vaccinated, and then returned back to their original locations. Rule 6 and Rule 7 of The Animal Birth Control (Dogs) Rules, 2001, state as follows: Rule 6 clearly envisages that even if the Municipal Corporation thinks it expedient to control street dog populations; it cannot restore to killing or dislocating. It can only sterilise and immunise the dogs, and then leave them at the locations that they had been picked up from. Rule 7 deals with the procedure to be followed upon receipt of a complaint. Please also note, the Municipality, cannot just pick up dogs, simply because some persons/administrators don’t like their being around. Even the dogs that are complained about can only be sterilised and immunised, and then left back at the locations that they had been picked up from. Please note there is a specific bar against dislocating dogs, since the same tends to interfere with and jeopardise the area-wise animal birth control. For the area-wise sterilisation program mandated by law, dogs have to be returned back to their original habitat after sterilisation and immunisation. Dislocation of street dogs has time and again proven to be counter-productive and only favours the entry of other non-sterilised street dogs into the area, thus raising more cases of man-animal conflict. Animal Health Care Local government veterinary hospitals have substandard infrastructure, and are hardly equipped with enough facilities to help the animals in need.  Even though there are laws regarding animal welfare and health care, the lack of awareness about them in the general public makes it harder for them to be implemented. Therefore the following steps must be taken: Government veterinary hospitals in the Lucknow city must be well equipped with medical supplies in accordance to the animal population of that area. They must be provided with at least one government vehicle, and a driver, to facilitate door-to-door service, and immediate aid to animals which cannot be brought to the hospital. The hospitals must be given decent financially support to take care of the expenses of medicines, medical treatments, and vehicular assistance. A toll free number should be set up to provide 24/7 assistance. The topic of animal welfare must be included as a part of the curriculum taught in schools, to increase public awareness.     By carrying out neutering drives regularly, and giving our hospitals a little more support, we can create overwhelming change. And we hope that you will help bring this change. We hope that you'll understand the pathetic conditions these pitiful creatures face each day, and do a little something to make their lives better. They say that the greatest test of a man’s character is how they treat their lesser. For mankind, this test comes in the form of our canine companions. A dog’s heart contains nothing but love, and it pains me to see these noble animals suffer needlessly in our streets. Friends, let us come together and make a change!

Wandering Tails
2,673 supporters
Petitioning Maneka Gandhi

stop using horses/mules to carry devotees in vaishno devi

dear sir/madam we as pilgrims come to vaishno devi yatra with huge amount of devotion for maa vaishnodevi. this is a divine place and people find peace here....but as we see the cruel behavior on horses and mules , used to carry devotees to different points of yatra....its really painful to see the animals beaten badly althrough the yatra. they carry weights more than their capacity....we have seen their legs shaking but still they are forced to carry yatris. we have also seen other animals eating garbage.  so the whole thing shows the insensitivity about poor animals who cant fight for their rights. i request all you dignified persons to kindly look at it and get poor animals freed.

pankaj bedi
1,484 supporters
Petitioning Shri Narendra Modi, Smt. Sonia Gandhi, Smt. Maneka Gandhi, Shri Mulayam Singh Yadav, Shri Ghulam Nabi Azad, Shri Arvind Kejriwal, Shri Prakash Javedkar, Shri Najeeb Jung

We need stronger animal welfare specific legislations in India. Lets make it happen

With so many cases of animal cruelty being witnessed and reported throughout India, the existing laws related to animal cruelty are weak and permit too many exemptions. It is therefore absolutely imperative that the existing laws be amended or scrapped altogether & replaced with stronger animal welfare and cruelty specific legislations to ensure that under no circumstances are animals abused in anyway and for the proper implementation of the ABC Programme.   Furthermore government run shelters should be constructed in every state and adequately funded to ensure proper and better implementation of the ABC Programme which will further significantly reduce the human-stray animal conflict. Let us unite in the cause of animal welfare.            

Syed Salman
943 supporters
Stop repeat offences by child molesters. Allow adult survivors to report childhood abuse

Dear people, Member of Parliament Ms. Kanimozhi and Purnima, an adult survivor of child sexual abuse, met me recently with a request to help adult survivors to report incidents of child molestation even after many years. Purnima told me that she could not overcome the trauma she faced decades ago. Children who are abused don’t find the courage to report their abusers till they become adults. In many cases, like in Purnima’s, they realise that they have been abused only after they become adults. The trauma continues for life. My Ministry is looking into ways and means of how to allow survivors of child sexual abuse to lodge complaints after many years of the crime has been committed. A one time abuser can go on to become a repeat offender and target multiple children, because children don’t tend to report abuse. It gives the offender a sense of immunity that he will never be caught. We are looking at whether the statute of limitation on reporting incidents such as molestation can be removed, allowing survivors to complain later in life. This will prove to be a deterrent for child abusers because they will know that they can’t get away with their crimes. We are considering the proposal to see how we can take it forward. I think such survivors should get justice too, even if it is late in life. I have referred the matter to the National Commission for Protection of Child Rights, to look into the matter and get back to us. I would like you to remain updated about the work done by my Ministry. Please follow us on twitter @ministrywcd and @manekagandhibjp page. Please also follow us on our Facebook page & Thank you, Maneka Sanjay Gandhi Union Minister For Women and Child Development

10 months ago